Thursday, June 21, 2012

Exposure and Sales

It's nearly a month since The Cornish House has been on the shelves or not and I thought I'd update you on what I've learnt so far about sales....assuming you've written the best book you can...

- exposure or position is the most important thing to selling books...

It's obvious really and it was something I knew, but I have now seen it in action. Where The Cornish House is in the shop window - in Cornwall (Falmouth Booksellers, St Ives Booksellers and Waterstones Truro) the book is selling well. In my local Watestones - High Street Kensington where it's displayed on a table - sales have been regular and steady. In the WH Smith Travel I think it's doing well (test case is Paddington Station where my family seems to spend half their lives - and last visit only two copies left). When I was signing at Waterstones Arndale Centre in Manchester I could see how shoppers were attracted to the cover. It is a wonderful cover and for it to do it's work it needs to seen. Spine out on a shelf and a début has no chance of finding a new home in the hands of a reader....a sad fact but true.

- family and friends....

From word of mouth, to visiting stores and requesting copies, to repositioning your book face out...these are just a few of things that can help sales

- local press coverage...

Débuts getting into the big press is rare - it happens but...not often. However I think local or smaller press is as important if not more so...don't dismiss the parish newsletter or the school one let alone the local paper or radio.

- the dreaded Amazon reviews...

It's funny but I never look at book reviews on Amazon unless it's for a non-fiction book. But I am somewhat alone in this...I only began reviewing books on Amazon and Goodreads about a year ago. I had done reviews on my blog but generally I'd thought - who would care about how I felt about a book...but it seems I'm wrong...

Now I have no real idea how the book is selling which is a very frustrating feeling - believe me. I do know that it had to be reprinted...good news but how good depends on the size of the first print run. I know my Amazon ranking...what me checking it obsessively - yup.

Yesterday I took out the egg timer and set it to 20 minutes.. the best block breaker I know (thank you Anna Louise Lucia). I'm not exactly blocked but more crippled by fear. I did manage to edit for 20 minutes and was cross when it went ping but that was all I had time for yesterday...today may be different.

I have been all over the web again...

First a beautiful review by Helen Redfern here.

Talking about the writer's journey with Caroline Smailes...here.

6 comments:

Liz Harris said...

I shall be taking tips from you, Liz.

Many thanks for putting up the result of your experience - it's very helpful for those following the same trajectory.

Liz X.

Deborah Carr (Debs) said...

So many interesting points here, Liz. Thanks.

KarenF59 said...

I thoroughly enjoyed The Cornish House. I sat on the front f my canal boat in the sun and read it last Saturday....all !
Thank you, when is your next one due out?
Karen

KarenF59 said...

I thoroughly enjoyed The Cornish House. I sat on the front f my canal boat in the sun and read it last Saturday....all !
Thank you, when is your next one due out?
Karen

KarenF59 said...

I thoroughly enjoyed The Cornish House. I sat on the front of my canal boat last Saturday afternoon and read it all that day!
Thank you
Karen

liz fenwick said...

Hi Karen,

So pleased you enjoyed TCH! The next one should be out spring/summer 2013...am working on it at the moment!
lx